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  • ଓଡ଼ିଆରେ ପଢନ୍ତୁ

New Delhi: India signed a $120 million loan agreement with the Asian Development Bank (ADB) here on Tuesday to improve irrigation and water management infrastructure in Odisha.

"The financing will be used for modernising seven irrigation sub-projects, resulting in improved irrigation in over 100,000 hectares, and strengthening the institutional capacity of Odisha's water resources," the union finance ministry said in a statement.

The loan is the second tranche of a $157.5 million financing facility under the Orissa Integrated Irrigated Agriculture and Water Management Investment Programme.

The second tranche activities and the overall programme are due for completion by September 2018.

The project aims to improve existing irrigation infrastructure, operation and maintenance, and water use efficiency that will lead to higher farm productivity, the statement said, citing Raj Kumar, Joint Secretary (multilateral institutions) in the Department of Economic Affairs.

"The investment programme will continue to support the water user associations (WUAs) to manage the planning, construction and operation and maintenance of irrigation systems," M. Teresa Kho, Country Director, ADB's India Resident Mission, said.

The selected areas in Odisha for the investment programme are the river basins of Baitarani, Brahmani, Budhabalanga, and Subernarekha and part of the Mahanadi delta, the statement said.

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